Warning: Here be spoilers, matey!
NOTE: After the completion of this piece, Zach Harper from CBS Sports, wrote this. Clearly, Zach somehow cheated and I’m convinced he has cameras in my office.
In the new MyCareer mode from NBA 2K16, there’s a movie included taking place over the course of the rookie season of the primary character, Frequency Vibrations (I’m not BSing you, no. The dude is called Frequency Vibrations, but thankfully will carry the name of your choosing for in-game commentary purposes).
So Freq (Freq = Freak, get it?) which he’s called, is the main character here and you get to play with him in both high school and college. I personally chose Georgetown strictly on the basis that I visited Georgetown over the Christmas holidays last year, which is about the worst possible way of reasoning for just about anything. Anyway, the dude dominated and he became a lottery pick 90 minutes or so into the game.
And that’s where things begin to go wrong.
Freq was chosen by Charlotte at #9, breaking Michael Jordan’s tendency of drafting bad white guys. Well, sorta. Because lo and behold, the Hornets somehow still got Frank Kaminsky as well, making it slightly better that MJ turned down the proposed Boston offer. Two guys with one pick? That’s history right there, and then it doesn’t matter if Danny Ainge is offering every conceivable Boston draft pick til the year 2065, dammit!
So yeah, Freq and Frank, which should be a sit-com in the spirit of Scrubs, are the two new kids on the block in Charlotte, and all the commentators can talk about is Freq. That’s a rough start for Frank’s NBA career, but no matter. Freq is going to play eight games during the course of his rookie season, nine if you include one playoff game against Atlanta. And in those eight games, all logic goes out the window.
Just to set the scene here: Freq has a twin sister, Cee-Cee, a leeching friend named Victor Van Lier (Vic), a girlfriend named Yvette, his parents, a very enthusiastic agent and a team owner (not MJ, unfortunately) all pulling him in different directions throughout the game. But wait, that agent? Not just any agent.
Yes, the guy from Spike’s 1998 hit film, He Got Game. Same actor, same personality, same everything.
Alright, so the team owner is generally a livid bastard who lives off cliché storytelling in order to convince Freq to cut out Vic from his life. Vic, apparently unlike any friend to an NBA baller in the history of the league, is enjoying that his life-long buddy has made it to the league, and takes that enjoyment a bit too far. The owner seems almost violently appalled by this and even goes as far as making a semi-threat to Freq that he’ll cut him unless Vic is removed from his life. In the meantime, Vic is banned from the arena, locker room (Duh!) and whatever area that directly involves the players.
Vic, it seems, is in fact SO bad that some of Freq’s teammates wishes to leave the organization due to his presence. I often forget how that’s the true reason for why Melo wanted out of Denver. Nene’s grandma was just way too intense for him to stick around. It’s just a matter of time before Anthony Davis decides the aggressiveness of Jrue Holiday’s dog is enough, and he forces his way to L.A.
After the initial “Vic meeting” between Freq and the owner, Freq doesn’t stop his communication with Vic, which ultimately ends up in a second meeting. Only, this time Dom is there with him, as is Cee-Cee. Dom, a super agent and supposedly one of the best in the bizz, wonders why they’re there and offers the suggestion that they’re there to talk about a contract extension.
… 38 games into Freq’s rookie season.
Not only is that against the rules, but no team would want to lock up a 17-minute a night rookie on the basis of 38 games. Everything is wrong with that sequence.
No matter, the meeting is about Vic. Here, the owner reiterates his feelings towards Vic and towards Freq’s lack of responsibility, this time fully threatening to cut him if he doesn’t remove Vic from his life. Because that’s what you do with top 10 picks. You cut them after 38 games due to poor friends. Trade him? Nah. You cut his butt and eat the second year of his deal and basically waste a top 10 pick.
(Good thing they got two guys with that pick, huh?)
I should mention that Freq, despite having a three-point rating of 57, is at this point 45-for-60 from behind the arc and in the process of breaking what would become the three-point record for a single season, hitting 112-for-195 on the year, for 57.4 percent accuracy. He’s also leading the league in FG% and TS%. These numbers have all been simulated and created without interference from the user (in this case, me). In fact, I went 1-for-9 on the long-ball in my games, thus worsening his numbers. But yeah, cut him. That’s a sane reaction to an NBA player having a bad friend.
As the season nears its end, Mr. McToughie is no longer involved in cut scenes. Instead, we find out Freq accidentally killed someone and Vic covered it up. We also learn Vic is a rapper and in need of money. We learn he made a play on Freq’s girlfriend, Yvette, and finally, we learn that Vic is still somehow allowed to use Freq’s car.
Season completes and free agency begins. I played one game in the postseason against Atlanta, which I lost, but in this world apparently you’re done after just one playoff loss. Tough beans, I guess. Freq averages 12.5 points in 17.4 minutes and is, apparently, an unrestricted free agent. That’s right, the ninth pick in last summer’s draft, is unrestricted after just one season. And despite breaking three-point records, being an elite scorer, only three teams show interest due to…you guessed it. Vic.
NBA teams have serious concerns about F.O.F. (Friends Of Freq) it seems.
Freq signs with the Bulls. Two years, $25.54 million. From a CBA perspective, this makes at least some sense. Because seeing as the Hornets only had him for one year, they’d be limited to offering Freq 125 percent of his original salary. Selected at #9 would mean a salary of $2,177,100 during his rookie season, upped to $2,721,375. That’s almost exactly $10 million less than what the Bulls were ready to offer. Charlotte would’ve had to clear cap space to retain him, but since he was unrestricted they didn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell at keeping him.
The movie itself is somewhat intriguing, mostly due to the fact that it’s something different. But good grief. Two players with one pick? A “Super agent” who doesn’t know you can’t extend a player’s contract 38 games into his career? An owner who’s willing to cut a top 10 pick? A rookie contract that ends after one season?
Spike, baby, here.